Book Image

The Web Application Hacker's Handbook

By : Dafydd Stuttard, Marcus Pinto
Book Image

The Web Application Hacker's Handbook

By: Dafydd Stuttard, Marcus Pinto

Overview of this book

Web applications are the front door to most organizations, exposing them to attacks that may disclose personal information, execute fraudulent transactions, or compromise ordinary users. This practical book has been completely updated and revised to discuss the latest step-by-step techniques for attacking and defending the range of ever-evolving web applications. Youíll explore the various new technologies employed in web applications that have appeared since the first edition and review the new attack techniques that have been developed, particularly in relation to the client side. The book starts with the current state of web application security and the trends that indicate how it is likely to evolve soon. Youíll examine the core security problem affecting web applications and the defence mechanisms that applications implement to address this problem, and youíll also explore the key technologies used in todayís web application. Next, youíll carry out tasks for breaking into web applications and for executing a comprehensive attack. As you progress, youíll learn to find vulnerabilities in an application's source code and review the tools that can help when you hack web applications. Youíll also study a detailed methodology for performing a comprehensive and deep attack against a specific target. By the end of this book, youíll be able to discover security flaws in web applications and how to deal with them.
Table of Contents (32 chapters)
Free Chapter
About the Authors
About the Technical Editor
MDSec: The Authors’ Company
End User License Agreement

Chapter 4
Mapping the Application

The first step in the process of attacking an application is gathering and examining some key information about it to gain a better understanding of what you are up against.

The mapping exercise begins by enumerating the application's content and functionality in order to understand what the application does and how it behaves. Much of this functionality is easy to identify, but some of it may be hidden, requiring a degree of guesswork and luck to discover.

After a catalog of the application's functionality has been assembled, the principal task is to closely examine every aspect of its behavior, its core security mechanisms, and the technologies being employed (on both the client and server). This will enable you to identify the key attack surface that the application exposes and hence the most interesting areas where you should target subsequent probing to find exploitable vulnerabilities. Often the analysis exercise can uncover vulnerabilities...